The Princess Companion: A Retelling of The Princess and the Pea by Melanie Cellier

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I have never read a Princess and the Pea retelling, so this book immediately got my attention. Fairy tale retellings are my jam!

I was really excited to read this, and it turned out to be a sweet basic story that reminded me of the Faerie Tale Collection Series by Jenni James, minus the insta-love. The constant emphasis on beauty felt a bit distasteful, but it was a fairy tale. What did I expect? I did enjoy the book and I’m really interested in the next one.

However, there was one issue: someone stole all the commas.

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Ok, so maybe not ALL the commas, but a lot of them. Maybe it was an ebook conversion error that ate the commas like pacman.

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Or maybe Australia has different grammar rules? I don’t know. I did enjoy the book, though, and I hope book 2 has escaped the comma thief.

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Mermaid: A Twist on the Classic Tale by Carolyn Turgeon

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As someone currently writing a mermaid book, this was a perfect read. I seriously could not put this book down. It was beautifully written, stayed within the original minus minor tweaks here and there, and opened up a whole other world within the fairy tale – the world of the princess.

I’ve read a lot of re-tellings, and I absolutely love it when it gives us more insight into how things happened. A lot of reviewers are saying there was no point to this book, but I disagree. This was definitely a wonderful story, and while there were a couple out-of-nowhere sex scenes, it was beautiful and lyrical and made me feel inspired to write.

If you want a great Little Mermaid story with a slight twist that will leave you breathless, this is perfect. But if you’re looking for something original, well…. you probably shouldn’t be reading re-tellings haha.

Puss without Boots: A Puss in Boots Retelling by Shari L. Tapscott

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I have to say – what a cool cover!

And the name is intriguing to say the least. How many of us actually know the fairy-tale Puss in Boots? Growing up in Russia it was one of many French tales I enjoyed, and so I had to get this book.

It reminded me a lot of the Faerie Tale Collection Series by Jenni James. Cute and feel-good with insta-love and magic and just all those sweet and wonderful things fairy tales should be. It was gender-swapped with a few twists along the way, and I enjoyed reading it, wondering what would happen.

There were quite a few things that felt incomplete, like the point of Puss’s boots. I feel like if the author took just a little more time to think through the plot, it could have been a really great book. For a quick novella it was a fun read, but it left me wishing for more explanations, more development. A worthwhile between-books filler, well written and cute, but not quite satisfying.

Is it weird to bless your own sneeze?

Have you ever had a story affect you so much, it changes things you do on a daily basis?

I have.

When I was a child, I read a book of Irish fairy tales, and one of the stories absolutely terrified me. The plot was that in Irish folklore, if you sneeze three times and no one says ‘bless you’ (or whatever your country says), then a leprechaun can claim you as his bride. In the story, an evil leprechaun made a beautiful young maiden sneeze twice, and on the third time his servant couldn’t let the poor girl be bound to his master so he blessed her. The story has a happy ending, but for some reason the fear of not being blessed stayed with me.

Apparently they made a movie based on it (Leprechaun 2). Never watching that. Nope.

So since I work from home, no one is usually around to hear me sneeze, so I end up saying it myself. Is that weird? Probably. Do I care? Maybe a little. But I’ll probably do it for the rest of my life.

Personal stories welcome!

Thorn by Intisar Khanani

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A true fairy-tale retelling? Yes please!

The reason I love retellings is because they take a tale and bring it to life. The originals are usually nothing more than short stories, and we don’t get to fall in love with the characters or feel what they feel.

Well, thanks to amazing authors such as Intisar Khanani, now we can! Thorn is a retelling of The Goose Girl, a novel where a princess unwillingly switches places with a maid. This is actually not the first retelling of this particular story that I’ve read recently (the other being Dreamer’s Pool by Juliet Marillier) but this one stayed very true to the original story and really made it a better version of itself.

While I really enjoyed the story itself, the book did have some issues that could not be ignored. There were many instances where I could not tell who was speaking or whom they were speaking to. It persisted throughout the novel, so I think a thorough editing would do it much good.

Overall, it is a great retelling and I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys them.